Naved, Malik lead Pak revival

Lahore, November 29:

Off-spinner Shoaib Malik and paceman Rana Naved-ul-Hasan shared five wickets on Tuesday as England squandered an early advantage with some poor sweep shots on the opening day of final Test.

England were well-placed at 101 without loss before a spirited fightback by the Pakistani bowling duo reduced the tourists to 248-6 at stumps in Lahore in the third meeting between the two sides.

All-rounder Paul Collingwood was unbeaten on a solid 71 and Shaun Udal on 10 when bad light stopped play with 13 overs remaining.

Malik struck three times in the space of 17 balls after skipper Michael Vaughan and Marcus Trecsothick hit half-centuries during a century stand for the opening wicket.

The off-spinner bagged 3-58 while Naved took two wickets in the last session to finish with 2-62.

England, trailing 1-0 in the three-match series, won an important toss on a good pitch and gained the early initiative after Vaughan and Trescothick frustrated the home bowlers in the

first session.

But the tourists were undone on an easy-paced pitch by a succession of poorly-executed sweep shots as Vaughan fell for 58, Ian Bell for four, and then Trescothick (50) to Malik playing across the line.

The 23-year-old Malik had Vaughan caught sweeping by Mohammad Yousuf at square-leg

in the third over after lunch. Vaughan, forced to open the innings after Andrew Strauss reurned home to attend the birth of his child, hit 10 fours during his 14th Test half-century.

In-form Kevin Pietersen, who hit 100 and 42 in the drawn second Test at Faisalabad, fell in the last over before tea when he failed to avert a short delivery off Naved and was well caught by a diving Akmal down the leg side. Pietersen, who scored a brisk 34, added 68 runs for the fourth wicket with Collingwood.

Naved then struck a telling blow when he accounted for all-rounder Andrew Flintoff who failed to keep down a hook and smartly snapped up by Shoaib Akhtar at deep fine-leg for 12.

Pakistan, playing without Younis Khan and Shahid Afridi, brought in batsmen Hasan Raza and Asim Kamal. Afridi was banned for one Test and two one-day internationals for damaging the pitch at Faisalabad, while Younis pulled out due to his brother’s death.

England left out unfit Ashley Giles and Strauss and handed 20-year-old Liam Plunkett a Test cap for the first time.